Associate Professor


Dr. Fernando Nunes holds a Ph.D. (Education and Community Development), and a M.Ed. (Applied Psychology), from the Multicultural Focus of the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education of the University of Toronto. His prior research and publications have focused on at-risk immigrant youth, ethnoracial diversity, critical pedagogy, minority academic underachievement, the integration of the Luso-Canadian community and the Portuguese Diaspora. He also participated in a number of collaborative projects dealing with at-risk immigrant youth, minority civic identity and exploring the effectiveness of Canada’s partnership model of the provision of immigrant settlement and integration services. His current research activities focus on minority academic underachievement, the civic and political participation of immigrant youth and an international project dealing with the integration of second-generation Luso-Canadian youth. His most recent project, funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, is examining the barriers and support mechanisms to the education of Portuguese-Canadian youth, in five cities. He currently sits on the editorial board of a number of international academic journals.

Dr. Nunes has also acquired over 30 years of employment, consultancy and volunteer experience within the fields of education and social services. He has held previous employment in Toronto’s immigrant settlement and research sectors, with such organizations as Portuguese Social Services, the St. Christopher House and CERIS-Toronto (the Ontario Metropolis Centre). He has further served as a Board member in diverse community organizations such as the Canadian National Institute for the Blind-Toronto, the Portuguese-Canadian National Congress, the Portuguese Interagency Network and the Toronto Community Care Access Centre. For 10 years, he was as a core member of the Portuguese-Canadian Coalition for Better Education, which worked with the Public and Catholic School Boards in Toronto, in developing strategies to combat that community’s high dropout rates. In the early 1980s, he also co-founded the first student-led Luso-Canadian student association, the York University Portuguese Association.

Selected Publications

  • 2012. Current perspectives and future directions in Portuguese-Canadian Studies. Portuguese Studies Review, 20(2), 7-31.
  • Kenedy, R.. & Nunes, F. (2012) An analysis of civic identity and participation among Portuguese-Canadian youth in Quebec and Ontario. Portuguese Studies Review, 20(2), 101-141.
  • Jean-Pierre, J. & Nunes, F. (2011). Multicultural education before and after the federal Multiculturalism Policy: A case study of the Board of Education of the City of Toronto from 1960 to 1975. Canadian Ethnic Studies, 43(1-2), 153-174.
  • 2011. Social, cultural and existential considerations in the schooling choices of working-class, immigrant youth: One minority youth’s story. Relational Child and Youth Care Practice, 24(4), 5-20.
  • 2011. Barreiras e factores de apoio à escolarização de jovens Luso-Canadianas [Barriers and support mechanisms to the schooling of young Luso-Canadian women]. In Andreazza, M. L. & R. Boschilia (Eds.), A voz e a vez da mulher imigrante portuguesa na diáspora: Brasil e outros lugares.[The voice and time of the Portuguese immigrant woman in the diaspora: Brazil and other locations]. Curitiba, Brazil: Universidade Federal do Paraná
  • Spring 2008. Striking a balance in Canada’s diversity dialogue. Canadian Diversity, 6(2), 121-125.
  • 2005. Gender differences and commonalities in the integration of Luso-Canadians. In Marujo, M., Baptista, A. & Barbosa, R. The Voice and Choice of Portuguese Immigrant Women, (pp. 149-155) University of Toronto, Canada: Department of Spanish and Portuguese.
  • June 2004. (Volume Guest Editor). Canada, The Portuguese and Luso-Canadians [Special Theme Issue]. Portuguese Studies Review, 11(2).
  • June 2004. Portuguese-Canadian youth and their academic underachievement: A literature review. Portuguese-Studies Review, 11(2), pp. 41-87.
  • 2003. Integration or return? Towards an effective emigration policy and practice for a neglected diaspora: In Sakic, V., Duncan H. & Sopta, M. (Eds.), Immigrants and Homeland (pp. 229-255). Institute of Social Sciences IVO PILAR, Zagreb.
  • 2004. Marginalization, social reproduction and academic underachievement: the case of the Portuguese community in Canada. In de Abreu, G., Cline, T. & Lambert, H. (Eds.), The Education of Portuguese children in Britain: Insights from the research and practice in England and overseas (pp. 167-210). Portugal: Ministry of Education.
  • Koc, M. & Nunes, F. (2001). Newcomer youth at risk in the school system. Toronto: Joint Centre of Excellence for Research and Immigration and Settlement and Citizenship and Immigration Canada. (Please note: This work does not examine Portuguese-Canadian youth)
  • 2000. Portuguese-Canadians: A profile from the 1991 Canadian Census. Gávea-Brown, 21, pp. 80-107.
  • 1999. Portuguese-Canadians and academic underachievement: A community-based, participatory research project. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education of the University of Toronto.
  • 1998. Portuguese Canadians From Sea to Sea: A National Needs Assessment. Toronto: Portuguese-Canadian National Congress. (The first national study on the Portuguese in Canada).
  • 1986. Portuguese-Canadian women: Problems and prospects. Polyphony, 8, 00. 61-66.
  • 1986. Problems and Adjustments of the Portuguese Immigrant Family in Canada. Porto, Portugal: Secretaria de Estado dans Comunidades Portuguesas.


Andrew-Gee, E. (2012, September). What’s Eating Little Portugal? Forget Africentric schools: Toronto’s Portuguese community has the highest dropout rate in the city. Maisonneuve, 45.

Seminar: Engagement in Multicultural and Transnational Spaces (Lisbon, Portugal) July 10, 2012

Seminar: Luso-Canadians and their Descendants in Canada and Portugal (Lisbon, Portugal) – July 10, 2011 (segment begins at 8:35).

The Agenda with Steve Paikin – The Portuguese Paradox – Tuesday, April 15, 2008